The frozen pot pies that sickened an estimated 15,000 people with salmonella in 2007 left federal inspectors mystified.... The pie maker, ConAgra Foods, began spot-checking the vegetables for pathogens, but could not find the culprit. It also tried cooking the vegetables at high temperatures, a strategy the industry calls a “kill step,” to wipe out any lingering microbes. But the vegetables turned to mush in the process.
So ConAgra—which sold more than 100 million pot pies last year under its popular Banquet label—decided to make the consumer responsible for the kill step. The “food safety” instructions and four-step diagram on the 69-cent pies offer this guidance: “Internal temperature needs to reach 165° F as measured by a food thermometer in several spots.”
Increasingly, the corporations that supply Americans with processed foods are unable to guarantee the safety of their ingredients. In this case, ConAgra could not pinpoint which of the more than 25 ingredients in its pies was carrying salmonella....
The NYT attempted to follow ConAgra's instructions on the proper preparation of their potpies:
But attempts by The New York Times to follow the directions on several brands of frozen meals, including ConAgra’s Banquet pot pies, failed to achieve the required 165-degree temperature. Some spots in the pies heated to only 140 degrees even as parts of the crust were burnt.
Here's a solution: don't buy this shit, don't eat this shit, and, whatever you do, don't give this shit to your kids. And as a general rule, food consumers, anything with more than one or two ingredients that costs 69 cents should be presumed to be unsafe.
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